Review: The Disney Afternoon Collection (PS4)

Review: The Disney Afternoon Collection (PS4)

Formats:

  • PlayStation 4
  • Xbox One
  • PC

Format/Hardware Used:

  • PSN Download
  • PS4
  • HDTV

Extras:

  • DualShock 4 Required (1)
  • Move None
Title: The Disney Afternoon Collection
Format: PSN (368 MB)
Release Date: April 18, 2017
Publisher: Capcom
Developer: Digital Eclipse
Original MSRP: $19.99 (US), €19.99 (EU), £15.99 (UK)
ESRB Rating: E10+
PEGI: 3
A copy of this game was provided by the publisher for review purposes.
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As the retro gaming trend continues, our childhood nostalgia has us revisiting games of yesteryear at an ever-increasing rate. Retro conventions have been popping up across the country to fuel this craze. Hell, even PlayStation Nation uses the Midwest Gaming Classic as its official community meet-up event every year.

However, with nostalgia comes a hyper-realized collectors market which can get expensive. Try to find that legitimate copy of Chip N Dale Rescue Rangers 2 for your collection for under $250 (at the time of this review).

Seeing the trend, publishers and developers have been capitalizing. Cue the latest retro collection to be offered by Capcom and Digital Eclipse: The Disney Afternoon Collection. You get six games for twenty dollars: DuckTales, DuckTales 2, Darkwing Duck, TaleSpin, Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers, and Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers 2.

Is this assembly of ROMs from years past worth the price of admission? Spoiler alert: it’s all that and a bag of chips – cause 90’s, ‘member?

Gameplay:
Since we’re talking a retro collection, emulation is the most important factor. The goal in my opinion is to perfectly preserve how the games played on their original console. In this case, it’s a flawless representation of what we’d experience on the NES.

Minor glitches are still there, like disappearing enemies when scrolling the screen. You’ve got all the sprite flicker your heart desires, even portions of the audio track will get cut out when certain sound effects happen, emulating the limited number of audio tracks at any given moment on the NES’s sound chip. In short, perfect imperfection.

… Save states are included, a MUST for any retro title …
But let’s be honest, you could easily obtain these games for your PC using emulation. So, features and extras play an important role in providing value. Luckily here there is no shortage.

One amazing feature is rewind. A simple press and hold of L1 will rewind the action on the screen. This is amazing for me since I don’t seem to be as good as I remember back in the 90’s. You’ll see liberal use of this in my playthrough video.


Save states are included, a MUST for any retro title. Remember leaving your console on all night so you didn’t lose your place? No need for that anymore.

There are also new game modes for each title. Time Attack is for the speed runners out there. You get an interface which shows you how long you’ve been playing and your best sessions get uploaded to the online leaderboard.

… The visuals are pure 8-bit in all their glory …
Boss Rush is also available. Play through the game’s bosses back-to-back. You’ve got unlimited lives, but rewind is disabled, for obvious reasons. Beat them as quick as you can to get your name atop the leaderboard.

Controls can be customized, and are as solid as I remember. That’s important for platforming games too. Any input delay or mushiness is going to lead to wasted time.

Visuals:
The visuals are pure 8-bit in all their glory, including satisfying sprite flicker. Being HD Emulation, everything is crisp and sharp. In terms of resolution there are three options: Original, Full-screen, or Wide.

Original is exactly as it sounds, a smaller screen for the gameplay in the middle of your TV. Full-screen fills to the top and bottom of your TV, maintaining the correct aspect ratio. Wide is for people who hate video games and themselves. Seriously, don’t use this.

… an excellent archive of images, original renderings, and even scans of the original packaging …
There are also a few filter options: None, TV, and Monitor. I LOVE TV. It estimates the look of that old crappy CRT in the family room. Scanlines are present as well as motion blur, common when using RF input.

Monitor gives you the RGB monitor look, scanlines without the blur. I found myself playing in TV most of the time, but I would recommend turning the filters off if you’re trying to hit the top of the time trial leaderboards.

Of course, I have to talk about the menus. How freaking 90’s-tastic is that!? The animation is perfect, and the backgrounds make me feel like I’m getting ready to watch cartoons. They do a great job at setting the tone for these games.

You’ve also got access to an excellent archive of images, original renderings, and even scans of the original packaging. While instructions are provided in the sub-menu of each game, I REALLY wish they had scanned in the original manuals. That would have perfectly completed this digital collection.

… Digital Eclipse brought the same love to these games as they did to the Mega Man Legacy Collection
Audio:
Can I say 8-bit one more time in the review to describe something? Well I just did, and the audio is spot on. The emulation does a perfect job recreating the original aural experience.

Online/Multiplayer:
Both Chip ‘n Dale Rescue Rangers 1 & 2 are two player games. If you’ve got a second DualShock 4, you can connect it for some fun couch multiplayer action. There is no online multiplayer.

Conclusion:
Digital Eclipse brought the same love to these games as they did to the Mega Man Legacy Collection. Each of the six titles is accurately rendered on the PlayStation 4, with plenty of new features to keep you coming back for another replay.

While online multiplayer and additional content in the gallery could have really elevated this collection, it’s well worth the price of admission. To all the retro-crazed gamers: I highly recommend picking it up.

Score:
8.0

* All screenshots used in this review were taken directly from the game using the Share functionality on the PlayStation 4.

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